Title: Echoes in the Glass
Author: Hayden Thorne
Length: 152 Pages
Category: Fantasy, New Adult
At a Glance: If you are looking for a quick and lighthearted paranormal to pass the time, this one is worth a shot. I was genuinely interested as Quinn began unraveling the mystery of the guy on the other side of the mirror.
Reviewed By: Lindsey
Blurb: Two adjoining houses stand in a quiet street for fifty years. One now lies in ruins, the other is haunted by the ghost of a young woman long dead. Quinn Geiger, twenty-one, is compelled to return home from college, though he doesn’t understand why. A month or two after his return, his grandmother suddenly develops an obsession for sewing a never-ending tapestry filled with strange details pointing to a supernatural world. A tapestry, she claims, whose design is dictated to her by the mournful phantom who seems desperate to reach out for help.
As the days pass, odd, unnerving events begin to happen more and more frequently, leaving the Geiger household scratching their heads and Quinn taking on the troublesome task of unraveling the mystery of twin houses. Things turn even murkier when a young man suddenly appears in the mirrors in Quinn’s home, looking and behaving as though he were caught in a dark spell.
Quinn—with the help of his long-suffering best friend, a heartthrob of a sorcerer, and the determined spirit of a murdered young mother—will find himself the unlikely and awkward hero of a supernatural adventure. A daring one, at that, where time is of the essence, and the survival of a lost young man depends on Quinn’s ability to keep his head straight in the world of the trapped and aimless dead.
Review: Hayden Thorne is a new-to-me author, so I had no idea what to expect of her writing style and world building. All I knew was that the blurb had me intrigued enough to give Echoes in the Glass a shot, and, for the most part, I am glad I did. I later found out that this is the second book set in the town of Dolores, which has a supernatural history all its own. I haven’t read the first book, and I don’t feel it is necessary in this case. There are a few references to the characters and maybe something that happened in the prior story, but it didn’t truly affect Quinn’s story from what I could tell.
I don’t want to give away too much of the plot, because one slight misstep could reveal too much. What I will say is the story was much more lighthearted than I expected, which worked despite the fact I had been expecting something a wee bit darker and grittier. While Echoes in the Glass wasn’t perfect, I was genuinely interested as Quinn began unraveling the mystery of the guy on the other side of the mirror.
I sometimes struggle to empathize with a young adult and the immaturity of their thoughts—I find myself wanting to lecture and mother them rather than enjoy the world I am being brought into. As a twenty-one-year-old who lives with his grandmother and has difficulty getting a date, Quinn’s personality was a bit on the negative and sad side, which fit for both his youth and life experience. I am happy to report I found that in this case it didn’t become too much for me; my guess is that it’s due mainly to Quinn’s grandmother and Edwin. Their influence kept his internal dialogue from becoming too much of a pity party, which I am extremely grateful for. The two helped provide a fair bit of humor.
What really blew me away was the poetic descriptions and imagery used for the other side of the house and the world behind the mirror. The details were vivid, giving the entire story a feel of the otherness that is both stunning and creepy. The chaotic beauty of the decay and growth, including the smells, left me with no issues in creating the world in my mind.
I did note some plot holes, especially in the world building aspect of the Glass-Dream world, nothing major but it could have a used a little tightening up, mostly small things overlooked in the effort to tell the bigger story or perhaps not explained in a way to make those things possible, given the way the world is set up. I struggled with a few of the explanations as to what was going on, and the theories of why, and I had difficulty registering some of the concepts of the Glass-Dream and Dolores’ history in general. It came off a bit convoluted a few times, and I found myself having to re-read the paragraphs a few times to get the gist. This was especially true with the Sorcerer’s descriptions and theories.
Though there was a romantic subplot for Quinn, it was not the focus of his story. The interactions between he and his romantic interest were sparse leading up to the climactic event. Instead, the mystery of the hows and whys of everything happening in Quinn’s life takes priority.
If you are looking for a quick and lighthearted paranormal mystery, complete with ghosts, magic and a little romance, Echoes in the Glass just might be what you are looking for.
You can buy Echoes in the Glass here:
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